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A Bug's Death

Discussion in 'The Calamity' started by Quirrel, Sep 7, 2018.

  1. Quirrel

    Quirrel Hollow Knight

    Posts:
    598
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    Male
    Occupation:
    Explorer
    Location:
    Pandora Town
    Race:
    Beetle
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    Very old
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    Neutral Good
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    Calamity, Hour 30

    Silverwood Forest

    When the chaos first started, Quirrel had been concerned. It was the way of everything to end, but he just didn't expect it to come so soon. There was no doubt in the bug's mind that whether this was the prelude to complete destruction or simply an interlude to a new age, Pandora would never be the same again.

    It was only fitting that the beetle would spend his last days in the forest that had both frustrated and amused him throughout his whole year in the box. One last excursion into Silverwood before what might just be the end. He had arrived in the forest only three hours into the disaster, and had spent the next twenty four hours simply retracing old paths. A simple reminiscence on old trips. A tree where he had found a talkative mechanical orb, that clearing where he dismembered a corpse, a lake where he met a missing girl, and many other familiar locations.

    He had rested at hour twenty seven in an old cabin where he had met a mad scientist and caught his pet. Another nice diversion from the circumstances around him. It was only at that point that he found out about some of the oddities that had started at this "phase" of the disaster. A stranger had appeared in his cabin from nowhere, dragged in by characteristically black vines. The man had told him that he was not a new arrival, and that the vines were now bringing people anywhere and everywhere. Along with that, he delivered foreboding information that the barrier in Misty Hollow seemed to be ready to fall at any moment.

    The stranger had seemed content to just wait in the cabin for things to blow over or death to take him, so Quirrel left him be. The news that there could be Misty Hollow residents fleeing into the forest and others that were just forcibly taken into Silverwood by vines was worrying him. The local wildlife wasn't taking the earthquakes lightly, and were even more aggressive than usual. Though he held no illusions about being able to help every unfortunate soul in the forest, the elderly beetle wanted to do his part.

    During these past few hours the bug had encountered several people wandering blindly through the forest, people he had aided by guiding and, in one case, defending them. One unfortunate person had been crushed by a fallen tree... Quirrel had made sure he wouldn't be hurt anymore.

    Seemed as if his last trip into Silverwood would go like all his other ones, a trip he'd spend helping out others. The beetle spotted a large cluster of spiderwebs. If he had visible eyes, they'd be narrowed. Before he could go and investigate, though, he heard the sounds of a human nearby.
     
  2. Lúcio Correia dos Santos

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    Lucio glared at the forest around him, letting a rare moment of frustration show as he got a look at his surroundings. This was the second time the vines had dragged him somewhere and he'd had just about enough of them, thank you very much. He was extremely unsure of where he was or what had happened, but judging by the chaos all around, it was bad.

    He'd dealt with bad before, but this felt... different. He couldn't really voice it. Standing up and dusting himself off, he set off looking for familiar landmarks - or anything really. The spider webs he came across were massive and he eyed them with apprehension, trying to skirt around them. He didn't know if the occupants of said webs were venemous or not, and he really had no inclination to find out either.

    Though it probably wasn't wise, he called out, seeing of he could find anybody. If he attracted the attention of a spider or something else unfriendly he had the means to defend himself or get away. And if he found an ally? Even better. "Hello? Anybody here?"
     
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  3. Quirrel

    Quirrel Hollow Knight

    Posts:
    598
    Gender:
    Male
    Occupation:
    Explorer
    Location:
    Pandora Town
    Race:
    Beetle
    Age:
    Very old
    Alignment:
    Neutral Good
    Directory:
    link
    That was definitely speech he heard! That was good, most individuals who could speak probably weren't going to be aggressive during such a trying time. "Yes, I'm here!" Quirrel called back in response. He was about to ask if this unseen stranger needed any assistance when he saw something that sent chills down his exoskeleton.

    Years of evolution had honed bugkind's ability to see the webbing of their natural predator, the spider. Quirrel had refined this natural advantage through years of exploration, to the point where all but the thinnest strands were clear as day to his eyes. And those strands before him were ever so slightly vibrating!

    "Careful!" he called out. "The spider's been alerted! You must have stepped on a low to the ground alarm strand! We need to get out of- AGH!" Before he could finish his sentence, the apex predator in question dropped down on top of the elderly beetle. In his panic, Quirrel had forgotten the most important advice regarding combating spiders: Always check above you. An amateur mistake, one that was costing him dearly now. The monster was larger than four bears put together!

    One of the beast's fangs plunged deep into his abdomen, cracking the chitinous exoskeleton around the entry wound. It didn't hit anything vital, but that hardly mattered when it began to pump in venom. Burning agony filled Quirrel's body as the toxin began to do its job. His limbs began to spasm.

    Through the pain, he realized this was it. There was no way he'd survive this. Even if he could patch up the wounds, this neurotoxin would kill him too quickly to save him. But it wasn't over until it was over! There was still someone else here, and Quirrel wouldn't die until making sure they were safe... so he'd hang on for now!

    Fighting through the muscle spasms, the beetle plunged his nail into the spider. The exoskeleton was pierced, but nothing approaching lethal damage was achieved. Still the predator reared back from the pain, granting the bug an opportunity to roll away and assume a combat stance.

    His movements were clumsy, a far cry from the normally lightning quick dashes Quirrel was normally capable of, but he knew he had to do this. "If you... If you can't fight than just... run away!" he shouted to the human, his voice weak from fighting the toxin. "I'll keep it busy! But if you are able, I beg for your insistence!" He'd die either way, but he at least wanted to give the spider hell for its troubles.
     
  4. Lúcio Correia dos Santos

    Posts:
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    Age:
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    Lúcio was grateful to hear another voice, though the warning had him whipping his weapon up and taking a defensive stance. He raced toward the voice, but froze when he got a good look at their opponent. Spiders weren't unfamiliar to him - the climate of his home city made for a perfect environment for them, but even the biggest there were tiny compared to the monstrous one in front of him. It was even larger than the webs had led him to imagine. The bulk of the thing alone was enough to give him pause.

    The being that had called to him was also strange - a bug of some sort? - but Lúcio had seen many things since finding himself in Pandora, and that only gave him pause for a moment. The spider was far more of a worry to him.

    "I can help. I'm mostly a healer but..." Then his eyes took in the wound the being had sustained and he trailed off, paling some. Oh, that's bad. That's really bad. I don't know if I can heal that. He eyed the spider, then his ally, noting the other being's almost clumsy movements. Was there more to the wound than just the puncture and a mild venom? Most spiders had at least a mild one to subdue or kill their prey, but the way his new friend moved made him worry it was a more dangerous venom.

    He took aim with his sonic amplifier and let loose a single pulse, using the knockback effect to (hopefully) knock back the spider enough to give them a bit more room to size the beast up and form a plan of attack.

    ---

    OOC: I'm really sorry about how long this took. Life kicked my butt this last while. x.x
     
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  5. Quirrel

    Quirrel Hollow Knight

    Posts:
    598
    Gender:
    Male
    Occupation:
    Explorer
    Location:
    Pandora Town
    Race:
    Beetle
    Age:
    Very old
    Alignment:
    Neutral Good
    Directory:
    link
    A healer... how cruel, that fate would give him such a false hope. Quirrel could already feel the venom doing its insidious work. There was no coming back from this, and even if he did it was unlikely the bug would be anything more than a mind trapped in an unresponsive body. "Neurotoxins..." he explained simply, voice unnaturally calm. "I'm... beyond saving." If it was anything like what the spiders back home used, death would come for him in around ten minutes. Not that he'd be able to do much other than writhe in pain for most of that time, though. "Want to r-repay the favor first."

    The stranger at least bought them some space. With the spider rearing from pain already, the concussive blast sent it sliding a few meters back. Filthy beast! If the human was truly determined to help him beat this abomination, then Quirrel had no choice but to force himself to live a little longer.

    He shakily traced the crack on his hat-mask with a chitinous finger before steadying himself. Behind the mask obscuring his visage, the beetle's insect features were contorted in pain. But to the outside observer he was the very picture of a calm warrior, the illusion only broken by the tremors in his arms. "A-Alright... I'll die like a mantis then..." Quirrel said, a trace amount of sadness tinging his voice. Those proud warriors, the mantis, laid their lives down to kill spiders every day. And he had proven himself to that tribe. He'd go down fighting. "To kill a spider... go for the legs. Front legs first."

    "Let it come to us... Spiders will retreat to their webs, and we can't get caught in the strands," he continued, recounting knowledge gained from a lecture long ago. The bug suddenly stumbled forward, only catching himself by planting his weapon in the ground. He forced himself back into an upright position. "Not m-much time left. Time enough to end this, though. Two legs, then the head." The arachnid was already heading towards them, clearly favoring the side which hadn't been attacked by Quirrel.

    If he wasn't poisoned, this would be a breeze. The spider was fast, but Quirrel was quicker than the eye. Now, though, he had to make each movement matter. Both hands clutched his nail as he forced the muscle spasms down. Had to wait for just the right moment.

    Right when the foe was upon him, Quirrel struck. He leaped to the side with all his might, the force of his legs moving him like a blur, and his nail trailed behind him. The weapon sliced clean through two of the arachnid's legs, severing them near the point where they connected to the main body. The spider recoiled and hissed in agony, as one would expect. A flawless strike... if it weren't for the fact that the bug was now face first on the ground.

    He couldn't get up. His muscles wouldn't listen to his brain. All his willpower had gone into making that attack but now it was gone. Even breathing was difficult. He could hear the spider collecting itself from the pain. He could hear it moving towards him, despite only having six legs. It was angry and it would have its revenge. If the man was still there, maybe he could try to finish it now... but Quirrel wouldn't blame him for fleeing. The beetle was a lost cause anyways.